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We invent things that help all people.

We empower inventors, technologists, and students to publish, find, and collaborate on invention ideas through direct coaching, team formation, curation of work, publication, co-working and learning events, and, in some cases, material support.

Why Public Invention Matters to the Future

Invent things that help humanity

We challenge the notion that inventions should be reserved for patents and profits. Rather, we invite fellow builders of the future to use their skills for humanitarian purpose. We want to make the future better for everyone. To do this we remove, rather than add, legal barriers to the free use of our inventions. All work done with Public Invention is free and open to all under share-alike public licenses.

Volunteer with Public Invention

Public Invention forms invention teams around humanitarian invention projects. We need Invention Coaches above all else. But we also need artists, writers, social media help, and all will find a place for all kinds of technologies: biology, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, computer science, and math.


Public Invention was granted 501c3 status by the IRS in November 2019. Please consider making a donation. Right now, donations will pay for travel to conferences, parts for the robot, supplies for the rapid E. coli project, and allow us to begin developing cookstove technologies for the developing world.

Recent Projects

Check out some of our recent public invention projects


The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the fragility of our global supply chains. The PolyVent started out as an attempt, along with 100 other teams, to make an open source emergency ventilator. It has now become the world’s most open and extensible ventilator.

Ventilator Verification Project

This is a project to match teams building emergency COVID-19 ventilators to teams able to verify the clinical suitability of those ventilators. The goal is to give clinicians the confidence to deploy a last-resort device by proving that is has been functionally tested, burned-in for 48 hours, and is clinically suitable.


The Global Open Source Quality Assurance System (GOSQAS) provides the opportunity to create truthful, transparent documentation via our open source provenance tracker, Global Distributed Tracking (GDT). Designed specifically for low-resource settings, GDT allows anyone with simple website access to securely record their project data.